The Idea Behind Wearing Something New For Eid Al-Fitr
I still vividly remember the first time my parents took me clothes shopping for Eid, and the outfits I would try, and how I finally came to find that one special outfit that I would show off with at family gatherings.
Remembering all of this now feels as if it were yesterday. It is perhaps one of the few moments in life
One of the most deeply-rooted traditions of Eid is shopping for new clothes. The tradition is passed on from generation to generation, just like our parents and grandparents had done it years ago.
But why do Arabs in particular and Muslims, in general, go shopping before Eid Al-Fitr? Well, it has to do with the teaching of Islam as it is preferable for a Muslim to look their best on Eid day. Wearing new clothes, smelling good, and getting a haircut are different forms of Eid celebration.
The tradition has lived on from the early days of Islam 1,400 years ago, to this very day, as parents go out with their little ones on shopping sprees in search for the ultimate Eid outfit.
Here in Egypt, we call the new clothes you wear for Eid your ‘Eid clothes’, and it is not uncommon to find some people jokingly ask if it’s Eid yet, when their friends are looking extra fly.
Nowadays, we buy our clothes from shops and outlets, but go back fifty or sixty years in time, you would find they went about it very differently.
Back in the day, before retail stores became a thing, Egyptians used to buy different fabrics of various lengths and start sewing their own unique outfits for Eid. Many of them were inspired by international fashion magazines that they followed closely. Many grandparents are still in disbelief on how such a staple Eid tradition fell out of use.
Tailoring one’s own clothes based on different designs has a few advantages from quality to durability, but with so many of us going about buying ‘Eid clothes’ through conventional ways, will this tradition ever be revived?